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Pal Asle Pettersen: "Komposisjoner 2005 -2008"

img  Tobias

Here is someone who not only talks the talk but also walks the walk. After listening to this CD, one could easily arrive at the conclusion that the composer really doesn’t care too much about anything other than satisfying his vital needs to produce sounds, sounds sometimes seemingly well-known and then again leaving their origin completely in the dark. Pettersen undoubtedly has his strengths in field recordings and also in blending them into musical structures that make complete sense in a twisted way: Folded papers, crackling spotty hiss and noise too rudimentary to allow for any kind of clear-cut identification are all part of the program.

All of these are dressed in the same wondrous garments, amazingly similar and yet as different as can be. To be able to distinguish one from the other demands a lot of concentration and mindfulness. That is until you arrive at track 8, called composition 18 v2. While waiting for anything to happen you hear silence, only silence and nothing but silence. Just a few moments before the track is supposed to end, there is an electronic sound, short and sweet, that catches the imagination. And then again, silence… the silence even spilling over into the following piece called composition 16.

And this makes a lot of sense, too. These compositions are so closely connected and their themes so similar, that their titles could hardly have been more precise than simply naming them: Compositions. Compositions with finely tuned differences, unerringly taking the path of traditional music in the realms of electronically inspired enterprises. Pettersen has followed the carefully paved path of experimentation with great determination and without any doubt about its legitimacy. And his work proves him right.

As I said before listening and trying to understand this type of acoustical and progressive art requires a lot of attention and the ability to stay concentrated and alert. In between these seemingly generic types of sounds a whole world of nuances presents itself, portrayed in a unique way. What you need to dis- and uncover them are ears, mind, brains and intuition. Go for it.

By Fred M. Wheeler

Homepage: Zang Records

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